Friday, October 26, 2012

10 Best Herbs for Indoors

A windowsill kitchen garden: Grow great-tasting herbs indoors.

You can grow herbs indoors this winter and add that just-picked taste to your meals, even when snow is drifting up against the kitchen window. You don't even need special lights—herbs fare just fine in a bright window. Here are the best herbs for growing on windowsills and the smart techniques you need to keep them happy and healthy until you can plant outside again.
Start basil from seeds and place the pots in a south-facing window—it likes lots of sun and warmth.
A perennial that grows well in containers all year long. Place the pot in an east- or west-facing window, but be sure it does not get crowded—bay needs air circulation to remain healthy.
Start chervil seeds in late summer. It grows well in low light but needs temperatures between 65 F and 70 F to thrive.

Planting Onions

Perennial bunching onions, plant once and you have onions for years after.

Green onions to the cook, scallions at the super market, Welsh onions in England, ciboule in France, or bunching onions in most books, they all refer to Allium fistulosum, a very distinctive member of the onion family. Bunching onions form perennial evergreen clumps up to 1 ft (0.3 m) in diameter and about 2 ft (0.6 m) tall. The leaves are hollow and tube-like, inflated their entire length. The bulbs are elongate and not much thicker than the stem. After a cold spell, bunching onions send up hollow stalks topped with little greenish flowers in round umbels (clusters with all the flower stems arising from the same point), that are 1-3 in (2.5-7.6 cm) in diameter.
The bunching onion was developed in Asia from a wild relative, possibly Allium altaicum, which occurs in NW China and neighboring Kazakhstan. It was brought to Europe in the 17th century.
Bunching onions are fast growing and very easy to grow. They are the perfect vegetable for the young "seedling" gardener.
Light: Does best in full sun, but quite well in partial shade, too.
Moisture: Regular garden watering for best growth, especially in the summer, but bunching onions can tolerate drought.
Hardiness: USDA Zones 6 - 9. This is a perennial and one of the few vegetables that can be harvested all year long. Bunching onions are grown as annuals in colder climates.
Propagation: Bunching onions can be grown from seeds, but once you have them established, all you have to do is divide them to make more plants. When you need some green onions, use a trowel to loosen the soil around a clump, lift the clump, take out what you need, and put the rest back in the ground. If you want to start another clump, just reset one of the individual side shoots in its new location. Plant it deep, so more of the lower stem will be blanched. I've had the same clone of bunching onions in my vegetable garden now for more than 8 years. They've been moved around a lot, but they keep on producing!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hurricane Sandy, Winter Storm Hybrid Threatens New York, Delaware, Maine With Bad Weather...

I pray for all of my family, friends, and others here on the East Coast that everyone will be alright during this storm.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

"The President's Own" The Marine Band

The family enjoyed an evening out to see the Marine Band, "The President's Own"...they played at our university and it was a wonderful time!
Gunnery Sergeant Kevin Bennear, Soloist and Colonel Michael J. Colburn, Conductor
Sergeant Bennear was the announcer and soloist for the band. He did a medley of Irish songs which was very moving and uplifting.
Sergeant Kevin Bennear

Monday, October 8, 2012

Pickled Peppers

With the long holiday weekend, we have decided to make use of some extra time and can some summer vegetables. We found this awesome recipe from Tasty Kitchen and gave it a try!
Pickled Peppers

  • 1 Tablespoon each Mustard & Coriander Seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon Fennel Seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon Peppercorns
  • 1 Tablespoon Cumin Seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon Thyme
  • 2 leaves Bay Leaf, Optional
  • 8 cups White Wine Vinegar
  • 8 cups Water
  • 4 cups Sugar
  • ½ cups Salt
  • 10 cups Peppers, Or More
  • 1 cup Carrot, Peeled, And Thinly Sliced
  • 1 cup Red Onion, Thinly Sliced
  • Dill Or Other Fresh Herbs (optional)

1. Toast the dried spices in a sauce pot for about 2 minutes, until they begin to exude their aroma, stirring all the while.
2. Add the liquids, sugar and salt, and bring to a boil.
3. Turn off the heat and let steep for ½ hour.
4. Pack the vegetables into mason jars along with any additional herbs.
5. Pour the liquid over peppers and any desired vegetable counterparts (sliced red onion, garlic, sliced carrots, etc.).
6. Store in the refrigerator for 6 months or process the jars in a hot water bath and store them on the shelf.